Education led Braun to career in writing, production
One Franklin College alumnus is in the national spotlight once again, nearly two years after winning a $1 million prize for a Super Bowl ad.
Travis Braun, a 2010 graduate, is known on campus for winning the Doritos Crash the Super Bowl competition with his “Doritos Dogs” commercial. Now, Braun is developing three new Disney television series, including one based on Disney-Pixar’s “Monsters, Inc.”
Following his four-year college venture, Braun journeyed to California to kick-start his writing career.
After a few years on the west coast, he joined the Nickelodeon Writing Program, a year-long program for young talents to develop their scripts and get paid by Nickelodeon. Through this, Braun said he made several connections that eventually landed him a meeting with Disney producers.
“I pitched them a show, and they liked it. I started writing it, and they liked the script, so we’re off into production now,” Braun said.
Seven years after earning a bachelor’s degree at Franklin, Braun now has three shows going into production.
“To have three going at the same time—it’s a bit overwhelming,” he said. “Thankfully, Disney’s paired me with some amazing people and some great producers who know what they’re doing and have done it a lot more than I have.”
Looking back on his time at Franklin College, Braun said he never would have pictured himself working for a company like Disney.
“When I was at Franklin, there wasn’t any sort of TV or film track or any major,” Braun said. “Hollywood felt like such a weird, far-off place. That was for other people, you know? I wasn’t one of those kinds of people who worked in Hollywood or did that kind of thing.”
Despite not having a major tailored to his career choice, Braun said he learned to value his liberal arts education.
“I would say 90 percent of the struggle I have on a day-to-day basis, or 90 percent of the problems I deal with, aren’t writing-related. I know how to write. It’s the other things where you are sort of pushed. Those are the things that Franklin teaches you—how to deal with those aspects of your knowledge that you might not be as well versed on.”